Have you ever stopped to think that no matter how much music you listen to, you will never hear every artist that’s recording today, let alone all that have recorded in your lifetime? A New State of Mind is an alternative rock band currently comprised of Mark Kapsha, Jim Zewe and Russ Burchell. The band has been together in one form or another for around 40 years. The music they have written over four decades has never made it further than their keyboard player’s house. But time has a funny way of changing people’s perspectives. They decided that if they didn’t start recording, their music probably would never leave the western PA house they practiced in. So the world can now experience the birth of their first new release.
Jim wrote the song ‘Greed’ that is one of the songs from that collection. This song was written around 10 or 15 years ago. This song was written as a political statement. That message transcends time and is still as relevant today as it was almost two decades ago. Part of the chorus “I took all the money” sums up the theme of the song.
‘Greed’s’ vocal style reminds me of songs like ‘Driven Under’ by Seether. A New State of Mind doesn’t try to showcase the vocal range of the lead singer but has a smooth even sound. The song kicks off with the drum and bass setting the tempo. The first lead guitar riff is before any vocals and is spotlighted intermittently throughout the song. Even though the keyboard player wrote the song, the keyboard doesn’t take center state but is part of the glue that binds the arrangement together.
It’s hard for me to get a feel for a band sometimes from just one song. As you know when listening to an LP, the compilation of songs takes you on a musical journey and helps you to understand the artist. After hearing this new release I am anxious to hear more from this band’s decades of music to peek behind their musical evolution.
In the short time after it was recorded, the new release ‘Greed’ is already being played not only in the local area, but has been heard across the ocean. And to think that up until recently this song never made it out of the keyboard player’s basement.
The interview for this article started out as a music review but has evolved into something much more than that. After talking to Russ Burchell I walked away with a desire to know more about where musicians got their start. So stay tuned for my upcoming First Angel Media series titled “Humble Beginnings” with the Russ Burchell story being the first.